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Crofts arrive and the Elliots depart
our heroine, is the middle daughter of Sir Walter Elliot, of Kellynch
Hall in Somerset. Her younger sister, Mary, is respectably married, her
elder sister, Elizabeth continues at home with herself and her father
and runs the household following her mother's death some years earlier.
Anne's godmother, Lady Russell, lives in the nearby village and is
Anne's favoured confidante, since she and Elizabeth don't get
- A distant
cousin, William Walter Elliot, is the heir to Sir
Walter's title, since Sir Walter has no son; Mr Elliot was expected to
marry Elizabeth, but annoyed Sir Walter by marrying someone else and
since then they have not been in contact.
- Sir Walter has
been consistently spending above his income,
and the time comes when he must either significantly cut his spending,
or resign himself to leaving Kellynch Hall. Eventually the decision is
taken to let out the estate and to move to Bath. The Hall is let to
Admiral and Mrs Croft and Sir Walter and his two daughters prepare to
- Anne discovers
that Mrs Croft is the sister of Captain
Wentworth, with whom she fell in love seven years previously and would
have married, but was persuaded out of it by her father and Lady
Russell, who considered the marriage beneath her station in life. Anne
has never fallen in love since and is considerably disturbed by the
thought that Captain Wentworth might cross her path again.
- Elizabeth has become friendly with Mrs Clay, the
of Mr Shepherd, the lawyer who has been advising Sir Walter. The move
to Bath is accomplished with Mrs Clay's help, since Elizabeth spurns
Anne's assistance in favour of her friend. Anne doesn't approve of this
friendship and goes to stay with Mary,
her married sister at Uppercross, three miles away, who needs her to
help with her children. Anne is grateful to be thought useful to
somebody, and is not sorry to be away from Kellynch when the Crofts
- Anne and Lady Russell are rather concerned that Mrs
who is a widow, has ideas above her station and may even try to trap
Sir Walter into marriage, but Elizabeth poo-poos such a suggestion.
- Anne enjoys her stay at Uppercross - although she is
particularly close to Mary, the Musgroves (Mary's husband Charles's
all pleasant and agreeable towards her. The Crofts call on the
Musgroves, and it transpires that a son of the Musgroves, now dead, was
who once served on Captain Wentworth's ship. Captain Wentworth
is expected to visit his sister soon, and the Musgroves decide to call
on him when he arrives.
A trip to Lyme
- Captain Wentworth duly arrives at Kellynch, and Mr
calls on him there. The call is returned, and soon the Captain is
appearing at dinner and at a shoot at Uppercross. Anne sees him briefly
when he calls at Uppercross Cottage one morning but they do not have
any particular conversation. She afterwards discovers that he finds her
much changed since they last met. Captain Wentworth himself was very
disappointed that she was persuaded out of marrying him, and although
he is now rich and ready to find a wife, Anne definitely isn't on the
- Anne and Captain Wentworth now meet regularly at
parties, but he is only ever polite to her. She feels he must now find
her utterly unattractive and an old maid, and is thoroughly depressed.
- Mary has no idea that Anne and Captain Wentworth were
engaged, since she was at school at the time, and is soon matchmaking
between Captain Wentworth and her husband's sisters, Henrietta and
Louisa. One of the Musgrove cousins, Charles Hayter, who has been
courting Henrietta, is not amused.
Bath and its
- An excursion to Lyme, a nearby seaside resort is
It is too far to go and return in one day, so the party, consisting of
Charles and Mary Musgrove, Captain Wentworth, Henrietta and Louisa
Musgrove and Anne herself, spend the night at an inn in Lyme. Anne
unexpectedly sees her cousin, William Elliott, but doesn't realise who
he is until after he has left.
- During their stay, they are all introduced to Captain
Harville, who served on Captain Wentworth's ship in the past and is now
living in Lyme with his wife. With them is Captain Benwick, who was
once engaged to Captain Harville's sister, but who unfortunately died
was away at sea. Captain Benwick seems to take a liking to Anne.
- Just before they are due to leave Lyme, the party
last walk along the seafront and Louisa falls, bangs her head on the
pavement and knocks herself out. She is unconscious for some time and
Henrietta, thinking she is dead, falls down in a faint.
- Louisa is taken in by the Harvilles. Captain
is almost beside himself; it is eventually agreed that Charles and Mary
Musgrove will stay behind with Louisa while Captain Wentworth escorts
Anne and Henrietta home and breaks the news of Louisa's injury to her
parents. It would have been better if Anne had stayed with Louisa,
since she is much better at nursing than Mary, but Mary insists.
- Louisa recovers slowly; Anne returns to Lady
Russell's house and from there to Bath to her father and
settles the question
- Anne finds her father and sister well-settled.
Elliot, who is now a widower, has made his appearance in Bath and has
been accepted back into
the family - he seems pleasant enough and Anne is happy to be in
company with him. She is not so happy to find that Mrs Clay is still in
residence and showing no signs of going home.
- Lady Russell is also in Bath, and Anne spends some
time with her. Meanwhile she receives
a letter from Mary to say that Louisa Musgrove has returned to
Uppercross and is to marry, not Captain Wentworth as everyone thought,
but Captain Benwick. Anne secretly admits to herself that she is
overjoyed that Captain Wentworth remains free.
- Captain Wentworth appears in Bath to stay with the
Anne meets him and tries desperately to decide whether he was ever in
love with Louisa Musgrove, or not.
- Anne discovers an old schoolfriend, Mrs Smith, is
Bath and has fallen on hard times. She visits her regularly and
eventually discovers that Mrs Smith knew William Elliot some years
- Mrs Smith guesses that Mr Elliot intends to
for his own benefit,
but has not said so as she thought Anne might fall in love
with him and did not want to prejudice her against him. Anne
reassures her that she is not in love with Mr Elliot and has no
intention of marrying him. Mrs Smith then tells her that she asked him
for help after her husband died, but he did not assist her.
- Charles and Mary arrive in Bath together with
parents, Henrietta and Captain Harville. Henrietta's marriage to
Charles Hayter, as well as Louisa's to Captain Benwick, is being
planned and there is shopping to do. Anne is now convinced that Captain
Wentworth was never in love with Louisa, but has the horrible suspicion
that he believes Anne herself to be in love with Mr Elliot, and
wonders how on earth she is going to suggest otherwise when etiquette
dictates that she cannot just come out and say so.
- Anne arranges to spend the day with the Musgrove
meets them at the inn where they are staying. Already there are Captain
Harville and Captain Wentworth, who have some business in the town and
are about to leave. Captain Wentworth is writing a letter; while he is
doing so, Anne and Captain Harville have a conversation about whether
men or women are more likely to remain in love for good. Captain
Wentworth overhears enough of the conversation to give him hope that
Anne still has feelings for him.
- As soon as
he finishes his letter, they depart, but he returns instantly, saying
forgotten his gloves. He leaves a note for Anne on the table; as soon
as he has gone, she reads it to discover that he still loves her and
wants to marry her. She excuses herself to the Musgroves and goes after
- They walk in the park together and everything is
Sir Walter gives his consent this time; after all, Captain Wentworth is
now rich, so even Elizabeth considers that there is no disgrace in
Anne's marrying him. Lady Russell is forced to admit that she was
wrong, and does so graciously, especially when she discovers that
William Elliot, whom she had thought would be a suitable husband for
Anne, is not such a paragon as she thought.
- William Elliot retreats to London, shortly followed
Mrs Clay, whom he sets up as his mistress, but doesn't marry, although
Mrs Clay does not give up hope of talking him into it.
- Captain Wentworth helps Mrs Smith recover some of her
husband's property interests in the West Indies, something she has been
unable to do herself, and her circumstances are much improved as a
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